Tuesday, March 9, 2010

In eleven days we mark the first day of spring and while many places still feel like winter, I though I would share a few surprises from yesterdays trip home after dropping my daughter off in San Cruz. By all accounts it was a beautiful day with rain showers and periodic breaks of sunshine, with pockets of warmth, followed by strong winds and even a down pouring of hail. And I loved every minute of it.

Just north of Santa Cruz but before Davenport I came upon a field of blue flowers bathing in the sun. Cars were speeding by as I made my way down an embankment and then up the hill. For the next half hour or so, I stood, photographing the flowers, which after many years simply spread unabated into a visual spectacle.

I was on my way to the cove where upon my last visit during a heavy storm I discovered the two heart-shaped stones. Since then I had a strong yearning to visit this location as I felt it had been calling me all these weeks.

The opening to the coastal access is nested between eucalyptus trees and easily missed. The wind was blowing hard and I felt under-dressed even with a heavy jacket. On my way to the shoreline, a rain shower erupted, but I remained undaunted and continued on. As I reached the edge of the cliff, the rain stopped and I began witnessing nature’s impressive display of light, clouds, and a rainbow.

Tansy-leaved Evening Primrose

On the way down to the cove, I noticed between the grasses a yellow flower beaming with joy. It seemed to be shouting for attention as strong gusts of wind had it swinging back and forth, shaking any drops of water from its yellow petals. There were a few more individual clusters of evening primrose a little further on, however a number of their flowers had been battered by previous heavy rainfall, that the petals were damaged.

After gathering a few large pebbles for the garden and finding another heart shaped rock, I continued to drive north towards Pigeon Point Light House. Just before the official entrance to the lighthouse, I pulled over on to a dirt road the field hands use to gain access, so that I could photograph the ocean and the dramatic cloud formation that was unfolding.
The ground was soft and soaking wet as I made my way towards the ridge. Sheltered in a thicket of shrubs I noticed something bright and after a quick glance I proceeded onward towards my objective, knowing I would return to the where nature held a surprise.

Tough-leaved Iris

Though I already knew a future post about this trip would be forthcoming, I decided that I could not keep to myself natures treasure of a single blue iris emerging from the surrounding darkness and shinning in the rays of a late afternoon sun. I needed to share, bringing some cheer to those still suffering winters hold, even though we to are still in our midst of a northern California winter. I still had one more place to visit before heading home. The hour was getting late, my appearance a mess and though very tired, my spirit held firm. Next stop, Bean Hollow.

By now the winds had increased, the heights of waves multiplied from earlier in the day, and their ferocity had also become more pronounced. I headed on down the steps onto a beach of tiny pebbles, watching a group of small birds chasing a retreating wave, while collecting shells the ocean had surrendered. Without warning, I was standing in the middle of a brief hailstorm. Once it passed, I took a few more photographs of the setting sun and then returned home.

This day would not have been possible if I did not take my daughter back to school. I would have not experienced the beauty and drama of nature as I did and the adventure does not end there. For back home there waited another surprise, a letter from a concerned friend, who knew of my medical procedure of last week.

Eva Macie — A Creative Life

Eva sent me a beautiful hand made card that she had crafted with loving care. A collage of different papers, speckled with a little bit of fiber and dashes of gold leaf, a few lines and an outline of a heart. All I can say is that it was the crowning of my day, making it a most memorable one indeed.

Anna Mavromatis — my Ephemera . . .

As I bring this post to a conclusion, I wish to publicly express an earlier joy that arrived unexpectantly in the mail a couple of weeks ago. It came from Anna Mavromatis in response to receiving full resolution files of two irises that appeared on my other blog. She had sent me a print of each, along with a Thank you card that she too had made herself. Anna’s technique employed the use of a computer to assemble botanical scans and a photograph, then printed on her mono printed-paper she had made earlier.

I thank you both, Anna and Eva for your beautiful
and thoughtful gift that I shall treasure dearly.


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